Monday, November 11, 2013

Baneblade Update: The Crew

Death Korps of Krieg Baneblade Crew WIP


After another painting session, the Commissar and gunner are complete...well...complete enough.  I have a hard time stopping, especially with characters or key figures. We can't let perfect be the enemy of great, though, so it is important to have a exit strategy so you can call it quits.

Since I had the crew magnetized already, I made a prop to paint them on so I wouldn't have to hold the models in my fingers.  With no bases, I would have definitely been wearing paint off and destroying my hard work! I used a wine bottle cork with a magnet in the end to hold the models steady.  I used reasonably small magnets so the models wobbled a bit, which wasn't ideal.  Overall, they stayed steady enough as you can see by the detail work.  This is a great way to paint a model without a base. Some even glue their main models to corks like this until they are done.

Death Korps of Krieg Baneblade Commisar

Looking at the picture now, I see that I do have some additional highlighting and detail work to do on the Commissar.  This Forgeworld model has excellent detail that demands respect and proper focus. I won't let it down.

Here is a close up of the crew magnetized into their ride. Just the right level of contrast that I was looking for.  Nothing that stands out like a circus clown, but enough pop to distinguish crew from armored hull.

And a final pull back for the whole work in progress...

Death Korps of Krieg Baneblade WIP Front

Time to name this beast and get on with the final details and decals so I can do some minimal weathering for effect.  I prefer to paint my 40K vehicles as they might be seen on the parade ground or aboard ship in transit between theaters of war - all repaired and refitted. Heavy weathering looks great for a diorama or particular set piece, but I find it distracting when you put the vehicle onto a table that doesn't match the vehicle's weathered effects.  So I'll wear the hull out a bit and dirty her where it counts, but I don't plan mud effects or any other heavy weathering or damage.

As always, thanks for reading.

Happy Gaming! 

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Update: more progress on the Baneblade!

Death Korps of Krieg Baneblade WIP

After a few weeks of on-again, off-again progress it's time to share where I'm at with the first super heavy tank assigned to the 262nd from 8th korps, 7th regiment.  I am very pleased with how things are going so far.  Following the overall camouflage that I shared in the previous post, it was time to add some details.  I started with a dry brush of the uniform grey used as the light camouflage stripes.  Then came the guns and engine bits, followed by some basic lens and view port work. Last I highlighted all of the Imperial eagles in Vallejo ash grey and painted the barrels.

Death Korps of Krieg Baneblade WIP Top

I kept the masking tape on to keep the tracks a "clean" base black without having to go back and retouch after the dry brushing.  This approach simply allowed me to be more free with the dry brushing around the tracks.  The barrels are painted a dull red/rusty color to give a little accent at the rear of the tank to break up the greys.  Also, it seemed incorrect to have the attached barrels match the base color of the tank.

Death Korps of Krieg Baneblade WIP Right Side

Next the real fun began.  The headlights were painted and the lenses and view ports touched up with some simple effects.  I am a complete novice at painting lenses/gems/etc...anything with glare.  I am very excited with how my first attempt at a realistic spotlight lens came out.  Not sure I'm done with it, but there it is for now. The slits in the crenelations at the mid deck were done in red just to mix things up a bit and suggest a "battle red" interior lighting on that deck.

Death Korps of Krieg Baneblade WIP Front

It was also time to remove the tape and being painting the treads.  I started with a heavy dry brush of gun metal and followed with a lighter dry brush with Vallejo metallic rust.  Then I went back over with a light dry brush of gun metal to highlight the treads.  The a heavy dark sepia wash from Secret Weapon Miniatures was applied to tie everything together. This level of detail will stand until I finish painting the bogey wheels supporting the treads.  I haven't decided where I'll take weathering at this stage.

Death Korps of Krieg Baneblade WIP Right Side

I decided to airbrush a red identifying strip up front where the regiment/company decal will go.  I'm planning to have specific vehicle identification numbering on the turret.  Somewhere, the serial number will be evident on the hull as well.  The Death Korps of Krieg follow no real standard between korps/regiment/company as far as unit markings.  I'm not going to match the true markings used by 8th korp, 7th regiment at the siege of Vraks...but who knows what might have been ordered up for markings in some other theater the korps was assigned to? 

Death Korps of Krieg Baneblade WIP Left Side

And finally the best part so far!  I am putting special attention into the shrine at the rear of the tank.  Super heavy vehicles are in short supply, mostly ancient and of noteworthy service being individually named and numbered. The tech priests are owed a certain license to provide a fitting shrine to the Machine God.  I hope this will a fitting place for the Magos responsible for maintaining this Baneblade to make suitable offerings. I have added a gun metal dry brush to the barrels along with a lot more weathering detail on the engine filters and exhaust manifolds and a muddy wash to reflect the general engine grime attracted to the rear of the vehicle.

Death Korps of Krieg Baneblade WIP Rear

So that's where I'm at so far.  I added the commanding Commissar and support gunner for the pictures this time.  They are magnetized so I can remove them at will for painting. Also, I wanted the option of using the Commissar as a squadron commander in other tanks during various games of 40K. They are really going to shine on top of this Baneblade once it's complete I think. 

Lots more to do before I'm done...the detail on this model is excellent and the large scale means it all needs to be treated with appropriately!  This is the largest 40K model I have painting and it's been a great test of skills. I'm looking forward to decals, but really don't want to rush that.  They will be added prior to any final weathering.

Hope you have enjoyed the update.

Happy gaming!

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Super Heavy Support: Baneblade


After a bit of a pause for the summer, I'm back to my DKoK project.  I updated my airbrush capabilities with a new compressor and air tank, and a new airbrush (Badger 105 Patriot).  To try out the new equipment, I began painting a Baneblade I built late last spring for the Death Korps.

Now, I've never played a game of 40K Apocalypse, but that's not a problem.  I can't resist tanks for the Death Korps!  Waiting in the wings, I have a Stormlord and a Macharius Vanquisher from Forgeworld.  These three super heavy tanks are the backbone of my 262nd Siege Regiment. All three will be modeled with typical Krieg accents.

Here's the first work in progress shots of the Baneblade.  It has been assembled (clearly), based black and given a simple camouflage pattern using Vallejo 71.056 Panzer Dk. Grey (Model Air) and Army Painter Uniform Grey.  Army Painter Dark Tone was sprayed uniformly over all to blend the camouflage colors and leave a grimier feel than fresh paint.

Death Korps of Krieg Baneblade WIP Left Side

Death Korps of Krieg Baneblade WIP Right Side

The Dark Tone leaves a bit of shine when air brushed.  That will disappear as I dry brush, and ultimately apply a flat coat for protection over the completed model. In fact, the next step will be an over all dry brush of the camouflage colors.  Then the tape will come off the tracks, which currently are base coated black.  Then the detailing and final weathering will happen.  This is a big vehicle and a great project for 40K!

You can see the Death Korps air filters added to the rear deck, along with the coaxial autocanon and the heavy stubber. These simple detail along with the final DKoK markings will go a long way towards identifying this Baneblade as belonging to the Korps.  The look will be completed by a Krieg gunner on the heavy stubber and a Krieg Commissar in the command copula. The figures are built and already magnetized for easy attachment to the tank once painted.  They will make their appearance in later pictures of the tank's progress, so stay tuned.

That's all for now.

Happy Gaming!

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

New DKoK Air Support and Anti-Armor Units

While still working on completing the paint on the 2nd platoon command squad, I took a break to work on a couple other pieces.  For Father's Day, I finally put together and based the Vendetta.  The was quite a bit more work to assemble than I reckoned and I was glad to have the whole uninterrupted day.

I wanted to get the cockpit and crew painted, as well as the troop compartment interior.  I'm still working on the waist gunners, but they are ~75% complete as well. This model uses the Forgeworld Vendetta parts, however, the wing mounted lascannon's aren't attached yet to make things easier to paint correctly.  I was going to do a whole magnet project so I could convert between the Valkyrie and the Vendetta.  In the end I felt I would only field the stock Vendetta in the lists I've been looking at.  So I stuck with a hard build of that version.  Here's a WIP shot of the assembled and based vendetta.  This is a gorgeous model!

Next is a front shot without the canopy to show the crew detail.  This is not a great pic for that, I admit! I'm using a Vallejo black gray for the base. I haven't decided on whether or not to add urban camouflage to match the rest of the army's armor.  Since this gunship would come from the Imperial Navy, I'm leaning on the different, cleaner look to distinguish it from the rest of the ground pounders. In its roll as anti-air, it would not make use of camouflage in the same manner that a Valkyrie would either.  While the Vendetta still carries troops, I'm choosing it to shoot down enemy fliers, and then skimmers and tanks when it doesn't have fliers to hunt. So it will be more flavorful to have a sleek black angel of death look, I think. :) I do plan on using the imperial eagle wing decals!

Next up is some fire support I put together last night for another change of pace.  The first is a Rapier Laser Destroyer from Forgeworld.  This will see action against heavily armored foes, such as the Necrons.   The twin-linked, ordinance(1) laser destroyer will go a long way towards stopping monoliths and the other nasty Necron armor!  This army has average ballistic skill, so twin-linked is a must for these key hunter units!  The ordinance rule will improve the weapon's chances of penetration.

I'll likely deploy this with a platoon behind an aegis line for good cover where it can make use of it's relatively long range. I had a good time scratch building the operator from my spare parts.  The model only comes with a Cadian operator, which would not fit in at all with my Death Korps! This operator was built from an artillery crewman. The right hand was replaced with the Cadian operator's hand.  I'll add a plate to the back of the hand with green stuff before painting to match the standard Krieg glove. The left arm is a pointing arm with the hand replaced by a shell loaders hand.The new hand was oriented and shaped in hot water to to grasp the hand rail for support.

And last is a Saber Defense Platforms I'm adding to the force.  With 6th edition, these now have sky fire and interceptor and will be a key piece of kit for defending against skimmers, and deep striking fliers.  I have found that the Necron flier does a heck of a lot of damage to my gun lines on the turn it arrives, so I need some sky fire/interceptor units, STAT! And with all the Tau and Necron skimmers out there, the sky fire will not go amiss, either. These can be chosen instead of a platoon heavy weapons team.  They aren't very survivable, but deploying them behind an aegis line or other good cover with a decent field of fire should allow them to get their points back.  Here again I scratch built a DKoK trooper as a gunner to replace the provided Cadian gunner. I'll add a second platform to fill out the squad.

With DKoK, you can't go wrong getting a hold of a bunch of the available artillery crew kits.  I regularly watch EBay and pick up these guys when I see good deals.  I have used the arms and bodies for may models.  You can get a lot of different poses by cutting and turning a hand, swapping hands, reshaping the arms with hot water, etc..  On this gunner, the right hand was cut off, and then pinned back on at a new angle to allow the model to grasp the firing handle while he points out some kill, or new threat.

In other news, I recently picked up a new Badger 105 Patriot double-action, gravity feed air brush.  My old brush was also a Badger, but it was siphon feed.  Even with the optional siphon cup, making it easier to add paint, it was sort of a pain.  The cup was under-slung in place of the bottle, and it was difficult to paint without tipping paint out.  It also hung at an awkward angle off-to-the-side that sometimes got in the way.  The new one has a cap for stopping spills, and being top fed is much easier to use and clean.  I also picked up quick disconnect connectors to make it a breeze to switch between brushes, and to remove a brush quickly for cleaning.  No more threading and un-threading the connectors.  I have really got into air brushing for all the Imperial Guard armor I have acquired!

Well that's it for now.  Happy gaming!

Monday, June 3, 2013

Planning for the armor!

I experimented over the weekend with a camouflage scheme for the regiment's tanks.  I used a pretty vanilla Badger airbrush to lay down a Vallejo Model Air Black Gray over a flat black primer.  Once this was dry I painted irregular diagonal stripes using Army Painter Uniform Gray. This is the same color I user to prime the infantry models and also becomes the base color of the DKoK great coats.  I'm hoping this will time the infantry and armor together as a cohesive force.

Here are a couple shots of the 2nd platoon command chimera with a base coat and camouflage.

Death Korps of Krieg Chimera WIP Left Side

Death Korps of Krieg Chimera WIP Right Side

Experimenting with the airbrush, I painted variable width irregular stripes in a diagonal pattern up one side of the tank, over the top, and then back down the other side.  I also two Leman Russ variants. One is shown below:

Death Korps of Krieg Leman Russ WIP Left Side

I definitely recommend an airbrush for painting armor.  It's quick, doesn't suffer from brush strokes, and provides good control for applying camouflage patterns that use a scheme where colors fade into each other.  I chose this approach to avoid a time consuming masking process to apply a more defined pattern.  As it was, masking the tank treads took enough time!  It was worth it to keep the base black; making it easier to apply the tread colors later without any re-basing.

I built a couple extra turrets to help customize the force against various Xenos foes.

The next step would be to cover the tanks with Army Painter Quick Shade Dark Tone to blend it all together and provide the shadows and definition for the surface details.  This will then be highlighted to establish the final base colors for the tanks before the remaining non-camouflaged details are painted and weathering is applied.

This has been a fun experiment and I love the results.  I'll complete the three vehicles I'm begun and then decide whether to mix things up among the various tanks in the army, or stick with this as the mandated scheme across the force.  It was easy enough to do that I feel I could consistently apply it across the many armored units I have at my disposal, so we'll see.

Stay tuned for more and happy painting!

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

2nd platoon, 2nd squad complete!

I finished the second 10 man troop squad last night.  20 men down....a lot more to go! :)  I'll do the 2nd platoon command squad next to finish out the compulsory platoon size.  After that, I'm not sure...I may go into heavy weapons or I may try a vehicle or two.  I don't want to lose too much momentum on the foot troops!  It may be nice to do a veteran squad to explore the veteran markings for the army.  I'm on vacation soon, so I'll have some leisure to ponder my direction for the army painting.

Here's the finished squad....

Death Korps of Krieg Squad Complete

I didn't do a good job tracking time on this squad, but this squad definitely came within the same 4 session time frame.  I feel I was successful in saving some time, but I now wish I tracked that better.  I want to get to three sessions, rather than four.  It definitely feels good to finish 20 models in a month.  I finished my 2nd Dark Angels tactical squad before beginning on the Death Korp, and two squads of angels took me more than 6 months - and I've been playing Dark Angel's for over 10 years so it took that long just to get around to painting the tactical squads in the first place!The new momentum with DKoK feels awesome and I hope I can maintain it.

So enough about that, but 20 models in a month feels like amazing progress, from my perspective! :)

With this squad I managed a few extra details: the red triangles on the left collars, gun metal brushed on the Aquila symbols of the food canister at the bottom of the backpacks.  I'll go back over the 1st squad during another sessions and tidy these slight discrepancies so the platoon is consistent.

All-in-all a satisfying project.  I'm very pleased with the direction the troops have gone. Now to sort the Commissar and Command models, and finalize the scheme for armor and heavy weapons.

For the Emperor!

Monday, April 15, 2013

4th squad done for now!

As expected, I was able to close on my first squad with a 4th session of roughly three that's 12 hours overall to get a ten man squad to this level.  I decided to hold off on decals and any final highlighting.  I feel one challenge with the number of troops here is that as I work out issues with my skills and techniques the end squads will look tons better than my starting squads.  So I'm leaving some room to come back and touch up early squads to match the outcome of later squads to insure the whole army holds together.

I held of on decals so that I could more efficiently apply them in bulk.  Perhaps at the platoon level with these guys.  I also need to make sure I've acquired enough decals so I don't end up with only half the army with decals. :)

So here's the finished squad:

Death Korps of Krieg Squad WIP Front
Death Korps of Krieg Squad WIP Back

So one down, and...LOTS to go! :)  I've got my work cut out for me.  I love the result though, and considering how long it has taken me to complete past units for other armies, 12 hours isn't really all that bad for me.

Happy Gaming!

Friday, April 12, 2013

Session three...almost there!

Death Korps of Krieg Squad

Last night was a great session.  The weapons and trench gear were completed, along with highlights to the armor and some base work.  The wash needed to dry, and it was getting late, so the rest of the base work will come in the 4th session.  With the bases underway, I'm much less concerned about the great coats now.

On advice from council, I decided to change the sergeant stripe from white to red.  This will line up better with the red I'm planning for the collars, veterans, and command staff and will draw the units together.

It took some thinking to decide on the weapons. In general, I'm using the green for most metal (armor, heavy weapon casing, ammo boxes, grenades, etc.).  However for the hand weapons, I felt the green would be to much.  I don't want the whole model looking green.  After reviewing the Siege of Vraks books and comparing with some nice results found online for other folks, I decided to go with a black-gray and gunmetal with a black wash for the weapons.  This scheme looks authentic but prevents the hand weapons from standing out and drawing the eye.  The focus should be on the trooper's head/face, not his kit.

If all goes well, the next post will be of the completed unit.  From there, I'll probably not post in such detail for every unit since it will be come repetitive with all the squads needing painting.  I'm very psyched with the results I have achieved across ten models in only three sessions.  That's about 9 hours of work and I already have a table ready unit.  The bases will get finished in the next session, followed by some general clean up of the models (additional shading/highlighting/fixing where necessary) and final details like the campaign marks on the collar. Last, I will add any transfers. I'm planning on shoulder pad decals for the regiment.

I hope you will agree this has been a successful test pass for painting a general unit.  If I can cut the work down to three sessions for a ten man squad from four, that would be ideal.  That's pretty fast for my painting, but I think I will pick up pace as I get more experience with the color scheme.  I look forward to painting veterans, command squads, and heavy weapon bases for variety.  And let's not forget TANKS. :)  That's the whole reason I got into Imperial Guard in the first place.

This whole DKoK obsession started when a friend gave me a GW plastic Baneblade kit in trade for my old edition Orks 2 years ago...

Thanks for reading, and happy gaming!

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Day two...

Wow, two days in a row of painting.  It's been awhile since I've made that much consecutive time to paint.  The 1st squad of 2nd platoon is coming right along.  It is a challenge to pick out the test model from the rest of the squad now.  I'm very pleased so far with the results.  My only concern right now is the gray great coats.  Maybe its the unpainted bases, and other bits, but I can't shake the feel that the coats still look like primer.  I will be exploring options .  Here's the unit so far at the end of day 2.  So far I've put in roughly six hours to get the squad this far.

Death Korps of Krieg Squad WIP

Happy gaming!

Monday, April 8, 2013

Painting has begun...the first session!

Death Korps of Krieg Squad WIP

    At last!  After many month of collecting and building model, then worrying over a paint scheme, I have begun the painting project in earnest.  The squad above is the first, arbitrary, squad I chose to paint.  I'm beginning with the masses to sharpen my painting skills and to get comfortable with subjects that aren't in power armor.  My other two loves are Grey Knights and Dark Angels space marines.  The guard pose a new challenge for me.  LOTS more models to finish and a different scale and level of detail.  Also the nature of cloth and metal in the guard will develop skills and techniques that I didn't really use with my marines.

I started with a test model.  You can see him on the left in the front row above.  There is  a close up of the model below.  I chose to go with Vallejo paints for this project, almost entirely.  They cater to military color palettes and the quality of the paint and resulting finish is superior to what I was able to achieve with GW paints.  I am using the ModelAir line where colors are available.  These paints come pre-thinned for air brushes, which also make them great for the standard brush!  Smooth flow, no glopping, no thinning necessary.  I find I can paint more quickly without losing any quality - in fact I feel I'm gaining quality and saving time with less touch ups, etc.

Death Korps of Krieg Soldier Test Model

The test model is incomplete.  It represents the planned color palette for the clothing only.  I didn't fuss with the details of weapons and equipment.  i felt these were goign to be pretty easy to sort on the fly.  For the bulk of the uniform, however, I can't speak highly enough about taking the time to choose colors and form a plan.  In this case, I start by basing the models in flat gray.  I then start painting with a wash of the great coat followed by a quick highlight.  I then paint the pants and gloves, and wash; paint the leg wraps, boots, and webbing, then spot wash those.  Next the armor, followed by the masks, hoses, and ultimately the equipment.  The process is yielding a reasonably quick table-top standard.  Some final highlights will round out the models, but my focus is on getting units DONE.  IN the past, I've gotten myself bogged down in perfection and details...I end up treating each model like its a special character and this takes too much time.  As a result, I have no complete armies after many years of play and hobby!

Death Korps of Krieg Squad WIP

The picture above isn't great.  I was trying to illustrate how much I was able to accomplish in only three hours in a single session. I was very pleased with the progress and this helps build incentive to keep up with the project.  Life will always come first for me, but I've decided to really make a serious effort with these guys.  The models are fantastic casts and it's really a shame NOT to get them painted.  

I intend to update this blog with my painting progress and anything interesting I learn along the way.  I started this project with a fairly reasonable goal, but I've far exceeded that now by collecting and assembling a major force of Imperial Guard.  I'll detail the current force in a separate post. :)

Cheers, and thanks for reading.